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A's 9, Blue Jays 4

The SportsXchange

OAKLAND, Calif. -- The Oakland A's lost the Home Run Derby but won the game Monday night at the O.co Coliseum, beating the powerful Toronto Blue Jays 9-4 in the opener of a three-game series.

Yoenis Cespedes had the Athletics' only home run, a solo shot to left in the eighth inning that snapped a career-high 25-game homerless streak, while Toronto got home runs from Adam Lind, Brett Lawrie and Edwin Encarnacion.

However, the A's outhit Blue Jays 11-5. Oakland took a 4-0 lead in the first inning, made it 5-0 in the third and 8-1 in the fifth.

Cespedes had a huge night, going 3-for-5 with a triple, a homer and three RBIs. Josh Reddick went 1-for-4 with a double and drove in three runs. Seth Smith had two hits, including a double, and drove in a run.

A's right-hander A.J. Griffin (10-7) had a perfect game for 4 1/3 innings and held the Blue Jays to three hits through the first six innings, but all of them were home runs. Lind broke up Griffin's perfect game, hammering an 0-2 pitch for an opposite-field homer -- his 13th long ball of the year -- into the left field seats with one out in the fifth.

Lawrie led off the sixth with a monster shot to left, his eighth home run of the season. Then with two outs in the inning, Encarnacion crushed a two-run homer to left-center, his 29th of the season.

Griffin has allowed 26 home runs this season -- the most in the majors -- including eight in his past three games. On Monday, he allowed four runs on four hits over seven innings, striking out five and walking two.

Blue Jays right-hander Esmil Rogers had allowed a combined seven runs over his previous three starts before facing the A's. Rogers (3-5) gave up eight runs -- six earned -- on nine hits over just 4 1/3 innings Monday.

The A's (63-43) maintained their season-high six-game lead over the Texas Rangers in the American League West and improved to a season-best 20 games over .500.

The last-place Jays (48-57) are 14 1/2 games behind the Boston Red Sox in the AL East.

NOTES: Encarnacion was named the American League Player of the Week, the third time he has won the award in his career and first time since the week ending Oct. 3, 2010. Encarnacion batted an AL-leading .520 (13-for-25) over seven games last week with three doubles, two home runs, eight RBIs and five walks. ... A's 2B Eric Sogard, who typically hits ninth in the order, hit second for the first time this season Monday night. He went 0-for-4. A's manager Bob Melvin said Sogard earned the promotion with his recent hot streak at the plate. "He's been swinging well and deserves to be up there," Melvin said before the game. Sogard entered the game on a career-high seven-game hitting streak, going 11-for-27 (.407) with six runs, four doubles, one home run and six RBIs. ... Lind (sore back) returned to the starting lineup after missing a start Sunday against Houston. He pinch hit against the Astros, striking out. "He felt better today," Blues Jays manager John Gibbons said before the game.
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